Recently, Charlotte has shown a newfound enjoyment out of her sensory toys. She loves to shake her rattles and press the buttons on her toys to make noise, and even loves to stick her hands on various textures and feel the differences! Since she’s becoming a little used to her current sensory toys, I figured today’s rainy day would be the perfect opportunity to create some new sensory objects for Charlotte to enjoy.
Sticking to a rainy weather theme, Charlotte and I crafted and played with three sensory activities while listening to the raindrops on our roof. The theme was mostly for me – I think Charlotte just enjoyed getting to experience some new toys, noises, and textures!
1. Rain Sticks
I knew immediately that I would have to make some type of rain stick for Charlotte to play with on this rainy day. She absolutely loves making different noises with objects she is holding. The first toy she grabs from her toy box in the morning is almost always both of her rattles. She shakes those things all morning!
I used the tutorial from Katie over at Gifts of Curiosity to make Charlotte a rain stick that is both simple to make and with a great sound! The DIY rain stick only needed five different materials and was assembled in less than ten minutes. I tried to let Charlotte decorate it but she preferred for the markers to go in her mouth instead of on her paper towel rolls apparently.
I thought that this would be Charlotte’s favourite activity by far, but she actually didn’t seem too into the rain stick. She liked when I turned it up and down for her, but the moment she got it in her hands she was more interested in trying to poke a hole in the paper part.
I think one day Charlotte will enjoy this craft for its proper use, but until then, I may just put it in storage so she doesn’t poke a hole and cause the rice to go everywhere!
2. Creating Rain
I have never attempted open water play with Charlotte due to knowing it will only result in a massive mess, but today I threw that fear out the window for the sake of rainy day play. So I put a towel down, and let Charlotte play in water outside of a bathtub!
I used a blog post from Clarissa’s over at Munchkins and Moms as inspiration for this activity. I modified the activity a little bit: I didn’t bother with the cotton balls knowing that they would only go in Charlotte’s mouth and didn’t have Little People figures for the water to rain on. Instead, I used just plain old water and bath toy animals for the water to rain on!
Charlotte loves splashing in her bath, but I didn’t realize how much she would love this activity! She played with that tub of water for nearly a half hour before it was time for her bedtime routine. I might have to start letting her play with water regularly in the evenings to give me thirty minutes of uninterrupted time to actually make dinner – a task that is nearly impossible with her since she hates when I am in the kitchen and able to play with her.
Instead of actually “making rain” though, Charlotte would throw all her toys out of the bucket just to collect them and throw them back in. She also liked to use her bath toy cup to try to drink out of – causing her to get even more soaked!
Overall, I will definitely be doing this activity again!
3. Exploring A Rainbow
Charlotte loves pasta; Charlotte loves colours; Charlotte loves playing with her food. All of these facts about Charlotte told me that she would absolutely love to explore a pasta rainbow and eat it too! We are starting to teach Charlotte her colours so no better way than by being able to eat them!
I followed the tutorial from Katie over at A Little Pinch of Perfect for Rainbow and Cloud Sensory Play for this rainy day play, except I didn’t add shaving cream for the clouds given that it would just go directly into Charlotte’s mouth and remove the eatability factor of the activity. Instead, I just used some alfredo sauce to represent the clouds!
Charlotte had an absolute blast playing with her food and eating her colours! At first, she was a little confused at what I was putting in front of her but once I showed her that it was food to eat, she went all smiles and dug in. She is a huge pasta fan on a regular day, but I think adding in the colours (and the fact that she was allowed to make as big of a mess as she wanted) made her meal and the activity just that much more fun for her.
While she played and ate, I talked to Charlotte about the colours of her spaghetti noodles. She is super interested in colours right now and LOVES to play games of “Where’s the red ball? Where’s the blue ball?” so adding that game to her food was a lot of fun!
It was definitely more work to make rainbow coloured-spaghetti but considering how much fun Charlotte had, I think this is another activity we will be doing again in the future! I think I may even kick it up next time by adding different coloured peppers to the dish for a little bit more nutrition. I love how this activity makes mealtime educational and nutritional, and even fun!